Speed Extends Point Lead Despite Talladega Tire Turmoil TALLADEGA, Ala. (October 6, 2008) -- Scott Speed and his No. 2 Red Bull team endured the trials and tribulations of Talladega Superspeedway in Friday's ARCA RE/MAX 250. The team worked...
Speed Extends Point Lead Despite Talladega Tire Turmoil
TALLADEGA, Ala. (October 6, 2008) -- Scott Speed and his No. 2 Red Bull team endured the trials and tribulations of Talladega Superspeedway in Friday's ARCA RE/MAX 250. The team worked quickly to get the Red Bull Toyota back on track after a blown right rear tire. Speed returned to the speedway and finished in the 23rd position, extending his championship lead to 85 points. The Eddie Sharp-owned No. 2 Toyota Camry also clinched the 2008 Speedway Challenge title.
"All I have to say is that my guys did a great job this weekend," said Speed. "We blew a right rear and everyone remained calm and got the car back together. No one gave up, which allowed us to gain more points in the Championship standings. We have one race to go; hopefully we can stay out of trouble and bring this thing home."
Speed ran solidly in the top-5 early in the race, only sacrificing track position to pit for fuel and right-side tires during the lap 29 caution flag. Speed raced quickly back into the top-10. When Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. blew a right rear tire, it appeared that the No. 2 team would leave the 2.66-mile Alabama track with a lucrative points lead. The fat lady was not yet ready to sing, and only ten laps later, the No. 2 Red Bull Toyota was the victim of a blown right rear tire.
The team worked rapidly to cut off the front end of the car and replace the damaged radiator hose. Speed returned to the track on lap 81 and in the 26th position, losing only 12 laps during the repairs. In the remaining 13 laps of the ARCA RE/MAX 250, Speed was able to climb three additional positions, taking the checkered flag in the 23rd position. Friday's race marked only the third race this season that Speed and the No. 2 Red Bull team finished outside of the top-10. The last time was at Rockingham Speedway in May 2008.
Despite Friday's disappointing race results, car owner Eddie Sharp and Speed clinched the Hoosier Tire Superspeedway Challenge Championship for the No. 2 Red Bull Toyota team at Talladega. The Hoosier Tire Superspeedway Challenge is the point chase for events on speedway ovals greater than one mile in length. The Challenge included ten races in the 2008 ARCA RE/MAX Series. With the exception of a 39th-place finish at the ARCA 200 at Daytona in February and the 23rd-place finish in Friday's ARCA RE/MAX 250 at Talladega Superspeedway, Speed's worst speedway finish in the ARCA RE/MAX Series this year was a fourth place finish at Michigan International Speedway in June.
The ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship Point gap between Speed and second-place Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. was extended to 85 points following the Talladega race. With Friday's win, Justin Allgaier moved within 105 points of Speed. Only one race remains in the 2008 season.